Middle age architects knew how to do their job and, as the following castles will prove, they were passionate about what they did. They most definitely put their heart and their whole being in what they have created, because the castles you’re about to see, are simply breathtaking.
Not just the appearance, but also their resistance in times of wars and conflicts, make these castles worth living in and just out of this world.
1. Reichsburg Cochem, Germany
Originally built as a residence for the German King Konrad III, this century-old castle has faced burndowns by the French in 1689, and was on the verge of disappearing for good, but thankfully a German businessman took ownership ower it in 1868 and restored it.
2. Mont Saint-Michel, France
The impregnable fortress of Mont Saint-Michel, surrounded on all sides by the sea, is one of the most popular attractions in France after Paris. Build in the year 709, it’s never lost any of its splendor.
3. Hochosterwitz Castle, Austria
Hochosterwitz Castle was built in the ninth century. Its towers have stared out at the surrounding world since then from a height of 160 meters above the Earth. When the weather is clear, it can be admired from as much as 30 km away.
4. Bled Castle, Slovenia
This castle sits on top of a 100-meter high cliff, staring down menacingly at the Bled lake. Aside from the incredible view which can be seen out of its windows, the place has a rich history. It used to be the residence of the Serbian royal family and was once occupied by Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito.
5. Hohenzollern Castle, Germany
This castle sits atop Mount Hohenzollern — 2,800 meters above sea level. In its heyday, it was the residence of the Prussian kings.
6. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
King Ludwig II of Bavaria had a very vivid imagination, which he dared to turn it into real-life magical castles. One of those castles is Neuschwanstein Castle, which originally translates as New Swan Stone castle and is located in Bavaria, Germany. This extravagant castle has been an inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s castle at Disneyland.
You might also like to read: 11 Facts About The Fairytale-Like Neuschwanstein Castle
7. Hohenschwangau Castle, Germany
8. Château de Chillon, Switzerland
An evocative of a battleship is the memory Château de Chillon brings, but the image it has now as a medieval fortress is simply astonishing. The castle is coated in a rich history and exceptional appearance and has served as an inspiration for many famous writers. In the 16th century, it was used as a prison, described by George Byron in his poem ’The Prisoner of Chillon’.
9. Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland
This castle, located on a rocky island in Loch Dutch, is one of the most romantic locations in Scotland, famous for its honey made from heather as well as numerous legends. Many films have been shot here and it is also open to the tourists and the wider public.
10. Bodiam Castle, England
Build in the 14th century, this castle has had many owners, and oddly enough, all of them seem to love making war. When it was acquired by Lord Curzon in 1917, all that was left were ruins. Fortunately, it was restored quickly and now looks as good as new.
11. Guaita Fortress, San Marino
Build in the 11th century on the summit of the near-insurmountable Monte Titano, this castle along with two other towers defends the ancient state of San Marino.
12. The Swallow’s Nest, Crimea
Established initially on the Cape of Ai-Todor where once there it was only a simple wooden house, the Swallow’s Nest came to life thanks to the German oil millionaire, Baron von Steingel. He decided to build a romantic castle reminiscent of those built on the banks of the river Rhine in the Middle Ages.
13. Bran Castle, Romania
A treasure of Transylvania, Bran Castle is a secretive place that gave birth to the legend of Dracula, who would supposedly spend the night here during his lifetime.
14. Vyborg Castle, Russia
Vyborg Castle was funded by the Swedes in 1293 during one of their crusades into Karelia. It remained in Scandinavian hands until 1710, when the troops of Peter I of Russia drove the Swedes out. Since then it has served as a storehouse, a barracks, and a prison. And now as a museum.
15. The Rock of Cashel, Ireland
Several hundred years before the Norman invasion, this was the residence of the king of Ireland. Saint Patrick lived and taught here in the 5th century. The walls of the Rock of Cashel have witnessed the bloody repressions of the English Civil War carried out by Oliver Cromwell’s troops. It is now seen locally as a symbol of the cruelty of the English soldiers of that time and the courage of the Irish.